Elizabeth Gerber, a mechanical engineering professor at Northwestern University believes that STEM students must be taught to fail during STEM classes. This type approach will allow the students to succeed in the “real-world.” In many STEM classes students are given a problem to solve, using a set of instructions, and specific materials. This method does not allow the student to fail. During my science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) teacher training workshops I conduct I have teachers conduct STEM investigations that are problem-based. Problem-based investigations focus much more on the process of investigating rather than the finished product. Teachers employ the Engineering Design Process via asking questions, creating, designing, building, testing, re-designing, and re-testing. This type of approach correlates to “real-world” life engineering scenarios versus the “cookbook” approach. To read Elizabeth Gerber’s article in U.S. News check out the following link.
Posts Tagged ‘critical thinking skills’
Introducing and practicing reflective journaling is a major component of all the STEM and science teacher training workshops I conduct. Unlike the traditional student science notebook where it tends to be teacher-driven, the reflective journal is student-driven. The use of reflective journaling in the STEM and science classroom is a powerful tool to help students develop and strengthen their critical thinking skills which is an essential skill in STEM and science careers. The reflective journal is ever-changing, it contains questions, thoughts, ideas, 2 and 3-D samples from investigations students have undertaken. Reflective journals can be used for formative assessment, and show the intellectual development of each student throughout the school year. In addition, reflective journals can be peer-reviewed, and encourage collaboration among students. To find out more about the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) and Science teacher training workshops I offer nation and worldwide check out the teacher training page on this site.
To view samples of reflective journaling from science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and science teacher training workshops I’ve conducted check out the following slideshare. It also contains samples of student reflective journals as well.